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Premier League Ends $988 Million Chinese Broadcast Partnership

T
he English Premier League has announced it has cancelled a $988 million broadcast deal with its Chinese broadcast partner, PPTV, owned by Suning Holdings, after Suning failed to pay fees worth $287 million.

The fees in question had reportedly been outstanding since February, leading to the partnership being ended with two years left on the Premier League’s biggest overseas rights contract.

“The Premier League confirms that it has today terminated its agreements for Premier League coverage in China with its licensee in that territory,” the Premier League said in a statement.

The Premier League will now attempt to secure a new broadcast deal in the Chinese market ahead of the start of its next season on September 12, while they try recover the money Suning owes for the 2019/20 season.

Initially, it was reported PPTV proposed a reduced annual rate for Premier League broadcast rights for the next three years, which was rejected by the Premier League due to the drop in its domestic broadcast rights revenues after the season was temporarily suspended due to COVID-19.

The announcement comes amid ongoing political controversy between China and the UK following the British government announcing a ban on Chinese telecommunication company, Huawei’s involvement in its 5G network in July.

The tensions between the two were also heightened when UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson pledged to offer British residency for up to three million Hong Kong residents after China moved to implement a new national security law.